Saturday, July 7, 2012

Hikone Castle - Japan 2012

Day 9 - April 13, 2012

Hikone Castle

While staying in Kyoto we caught a train to check out Hikone Castle. We were a little late for the train but we got to Hikone bout 11 and the castle grounds were teeming with tourists. Damn tourist buses. 


From the station it was about a ten minute walk to the castle grounds.

At the train staion was this cool statue of a samurai:



On the way back to the train, we got a bento box each from a shop we saw on the way to the castle. It was fresh, tasty and pretty cheap. It was about $1000 yen for a bento each.

We sat outside the station, to eat lunch, in a small garden by the statue.



At the Castle there were tour groups galore but it was ok as they move like sleepy snails with bubble gum on their shoes. 

The Sakura surrounding the moat were very pretty.







There were great gardens around the castle. Here some people enjoy their lunch under the Sakura


We tramped up the old stone stairs, and more stairs, to storm the Castle. 




Cool stone steps outside the castle:






The Castle was very cool, worth a visit!. Once at the top of the stairs we did have a small wait to go into the castle and no shoes allowed, you get used to taking off your shoes though.

Within the castle you have to be ready for a steep climb up more of a ladder than a staircase. But! no excuses, there were old people who colud barely walk and kids making their way through the old castle.







From up in the castle there are amazing views of the city below. We didn't bother with garden or museum (we found most museums are a bit basic and in Japanese so I didn't find many interesting enough to forgo lunch)



My lovely wife Rachel posed for me in front of a large Cherry Blossom:



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